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Shortage of Radiography Staff adding to woes at Kerry General Hospital

15 January, 2008

The shortage of Radiography Staff is seriously adding to the problems at Kerry General Hospital according to Sinn Féin TD Martin Ferris. Deputy Ferris said that during out of hours and at weekends there is only one Radiographer to cover the Accident and Emergency department, theatre and all of the wards and when the Radiographer was needed in surgery, people in need of an x-ray from A&E could be waiting an hour and a half to be seen.

He said that this was adding to an already unacceptable situation at the hospitals Accident & Emergency department where people are being forced to wait on trolleys.

Deputy Ferris said:

"According to a reply I received from the Local Hospital Network Manager, Mr. Gerry O'Dwyer, Kerry General Hospital identified the need for extra Radiography Staff and submitted a bid to the Estimates Process for 2007 for its implementation; however, no funds were received. He said that additional Radiography staff would allow an out-of-hours system to be introduced ensuring A&E has a radiographer available at all times.

"It is abhorrent that Kerry General Hospital was refused funding for such an essential service like radiography. The fact that there is only one Radiographer to cover the A&E department, the theatre and the wards during out of hours and at weekends is seriously adding to the waiting problems being experienced at the A&E. This is also causing serious frustration amongst the medical staff at the hospital.

"I understand that a further bid has been submitted to the estimates process for 2008, in order to address the existing pressures particularly out of hours (after 5pm and weekend). I only hope that this bid is successful.

"In the meantime I welcome the news that approval for an additional Consultant Radiologist has been granted for Kerry General Hospital in response to an application in respect of the HSE's 100+ Consultant Scheme. It is expected that this post will improve the Radiology service provided at the hospital. However, it is imperative that extra Radiography Staff are employed to ensure that no department or ward at the hospital is left without this service at any time.


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